Newswise — DURHAM, N.C. – Duke Children’s Hospital & Health Center continues to rank as the No. 1 children’s hospital in North Carolina by U.S. News & World Report, with nine pediatric specialties ranked among the best in the nation.

Duke Children’s also retained a prominent position in the region and nationally – ranking fourth in the southeast and 27th in the nation in the magazine’s annual listing.

“We are honored to care for the children of our community with innovative and compassionate care by a team of excellent health care providers,” said Ann Reed, M.D., chair of the Duke Department of Pediatrics

Duke also received top marks in this year’s list for pediatric cardiology and heart surgery, placing seventh nationally.

“Innovation and a supportive team environment allow us to achieve the best outcomes for our patients in the Duke Pediatric and Congenital Heart Center,” said Joseph Turek, M.D., Ph.D., chief of Duke’s Pediatric Cardiac Surgery.

“It takes every person on our team of more than 300 clinical professionals to achieve top-level results. It allowed us to perform several first-in-the-world procedures in the past year and handle some of the toughest patient cases that exist.”

The distinction for the pediatric heart program comes after Duke surgeons performed the world’s first combination heart transplant and thymus procedure and the nation’s first pediatric heart transplant using a new method of heart donation.

Duke Children’s also completed a major investment in pediatric care this year with the opening of the new Duke Central Tower, which provided larger pediatric patient rooms, two pediatric cardiac catheterization labs, a new state-of-the-art pharmacy service and other amenities.

The U.S. News rankings are derived from survey data obtained from medical centers and pediatric specialists, measuring clinical outcomes, hospital resources, delivery of healthcare and expert opinion. 

This year the rankings added a new metric to account for equity, diversity and inclusion, giving credit to any specialty engaged in efforts around this topic.

The specialties at Duke Children’s that ranked among the top 50 are: 

•    Cancer
•    Cardiology and heart surgery
•    Diabetes and endocrinology 
•    Gastroenterology and GI surgery
•    Neonatal care
•    Nephrology
•    Orthopedics 
•    Pulmonology and lung surgery
•    Urology